By Nation

Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana has returned to Muungano, a party he abandoned to join Kalonzo Musyoka’s Wiper in 2017.

“I will contest the presidency on a Muungano Party ticket in 2022,” Prof Kibwana said while commissioning projects in Kitise on Wednesday.

He accused the Wiper Party boss of shortchanging him on critical aspects of their agreement, especially on the number of nominated ward representatives.

Muungano Secretary-General Jonathan Mwaniki said Wiper has been hostile to the Makueni governor.

“Prof Kibwana will be back in Muungano soon. The talks are complete,” Mr Mwaniki told the Saturday Nation.

The governor has of late been gravitating towards Deputy President William Ruto and the anti-Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) brigade.

Prof Kibwana suffered a blow recently when Muungano Party nominee for the Kitise/Kithuki ward by-election withdrew from the race.

The county boss had hoped to use the mini poll to stamp his clout in the region.

The seat fell vacant when Kitise/Kithuki Ward Representative Kelvin Mutuku resigned to become the county clerk.

Mr Musyoka persuaded Mr Julius Nzumbi to withdraw from the race.

The teacher went for the Muungano Party ticket after falling out with Wiper during the party primary.

He had accused some Wiper top leaders of conspiring to rig him out.

Mr Nzumbi is a resident of Kitise. The Wiper Party candidate is Mr Sebastian Muli.

Mr Nzumbi went missing hours before the hopefuls were to present their nomination papers to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) offices in Wote on Monday.

He switched off his phones for two days, raising fears that he had been kidnapped.

Mr Nzumbi was locked out of the race as IEBC cleared Mr Muli, Mr Paul M Mwalali (Ukweli Party), Mr Daniel N Mbwika (People’s Trust Party), Ms Jacinta Wanza (The New Democrats), Mr Stephen K Mutiso (People’s Empowerment Party), Mr Francis M Kitana (Narc) and Justus Kyalo Masuva (independent).

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